Dual purpose long season winter wheats to improve productivity in Western Australia

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date


Conference Title

Australian Society of Agronomy 13th Annual Conference 2006: Groundbreaking Stuff

Place of Publication

Perth, WA


Dual purpose wheats; variety evaluation; grazing and grain; wheat biomass; grain yield and quality


Agricultural Science | Agronomy and Crop Sciences


Long season winter wheat trials were established in the south coast environments of Western Australia (at Gibson and Jerramungup) to demonstrate opportunities for cereal growers to improve green feed availability for livestock (in late autumn to early winter), then to harvest for yield and premium grain quality. Dry matter of 1.4 t/ha (1.0 – 1.6 t/ha for the first grazing) and 2.2 t/ha (1.8 – 3.0 t/ha for the second grazing) was removed in late June and July by simulating grazing. Grazing generally delayed the flowering by 1 to 2 weeks compared to ungrazed. Dual purpose wheats ( EGA Wedgetail and Wylah, which are winter types with good grain quality) have shown the potential to benefit both livestock and crop production by spreading extreme climatic risks (eg. frost, drought, waterlogging) through delayed maturity with early sowings. Both dual purpose wheats yielded in the range of 4 t/ha at Gibson and 2.6 t/ha at Jerramungup, providing the additional benefit of grazing. Grain quality (including screening, fungal staining and low falling numbers) was the major problem with all long season wheat varieties due to weather damage and the late harvest after mid December and early February. The small grain screening was comparatively lower for the dual purpose wheats. Similar results were found in a variety by time of sowing trial in the central wheatbelt at Merredin.